The Lived Experience of the Influence of Positive Student-Teacher Connections from Students’ Perspective as Reported by High School Graduates
Southern New Hampshire University
This study aims to identify the importance of Student-Teacher Connections (STC), as defined by the student, through direct interviews to gain better insight and understanding of the benefits obtained from these positive student teacher connections (STCs). Current literature mostly explores these connections from the perspective of the adults: teachers, administrators, and researchers, rather than through direct engagement with students and seeking their perspectives on their relationships with their teachers (Ibrahim and Zaatari, 2020). Insights from the students, gathered in this research, can be used to inform how these relationships can be fostered and how to best grow and care for them. Much of what teachers offer academically has been analyzed in educational research (Wentzel, 2012). Many high school teachers believe they do much more than teach subject matter to their students; most believe they are instrumental in their students’ adolescent development, and this has an impact on students’ senses of school belonging (Allen et. al, 2018). This Dissertation in Practice (DiP) explores the lived experience of high school students, their positive connections with their teachers, and their perception of the impact these experiences had on their educations.